A strategic action plan to improve ONE sustainability challenge (NOT scandal) faced by a fictional company

Assessment 2: Individual Report,

– Not more than 2,000 words

-Industry – fashion industry (fashion retail sector)

-Fictional company name – Miss ALondon


This is an individual report in which students are required to form a fictional company, and also identify a major sustainability challenge facing the company. In order to do this, each student will research existing companies in a chosen industry to assess their sustainability challenges. The idea is for the students to use these case study of companies as background studies for their chosen fictional companies.

Aim: A strategic action plan to improve ONE sustainability challenge (NOT scandal) faced by a fictional company (*).

(*) The use of a fictional case will allow you to have greater flexibility and freedom on what you want to focus on: e.g. you can exaggerate issues without being afraid of infringing intellectual property (IP) rights.

Research process: In order to develop your fictional company, you are expected to do an adequate amount of analytical research of existing companies within a chosen sector, in order to identify the major sustainability challenges they face. For instance, if you decide to develop a fictional car company, then you are expected to draw ideas from existing car companies such as Volkswagen, Ford, Mazda, etc. Or if you wish to develop a case on fashion retail, you will draw ideas from companies such as Zara, H&M, etc.

You have to focus on a Sustainability procedural, operational, or mindset issue identified as a matter of business priority; ‘scandals’ are not accepted in this assignment.

So, as initial research process, you are expected to:

i. Select the sector- Fashion retail sector

ii. Select a few companies within that sector to inform your analysis. You will have to acknowledge and list all the companies you drew ideas from in a formal written Disclaimer at the start or at the end of the presentation.

iii. Research and list the major sustainability issues these companies & sector are facing

iv. Inspired on the cases analyzed, build your fictional company. This should include sections such as the company’s vision and mission; objectives; five key departments within the company and their role in addressing the sustainability challenge identified.(e.g. Marketing, Research and Development (R&D), Finance, Operations, Human Resources) ; and mid/to long-term strategic plan of the company. More support and specific guidelines on individual roles and group synergy will be provided in the seminars/scheduled tutorials.


1. Brief overview of case

Start with a brief overview of the fictional company’s vision, aims and objectives and the identified challenge to address. Provide an overview of the case study companies researched, including their sustainability challenges presented as materiality matrices. This should be followed by your own fictional company’s sustainability challenges, and then identify the (ONE) most pressing of the challenges you aim to tackle. This should be summarised as a materiality chart (materiality matrix).

2. Strategic plan

Propose a strategic plan to improve the sustainability issue identified. Use a visual project chart and timeline (e.g. a Gantt chart) to briefly identify the milestones to be achieved. Do not overdo the number of milestones: this is an exercise, so two or three milestones are more than enough to demonstrate that you know how to apply the basic management tools used in a project. Remember to identify which TASKS will have to be accomplished to contribute to each of the identified milestone, how long and specifically when the overall project and each task take place. Justify the tasks identified using general management and sustainability concepts and tools (frameworks, models, metrics, procedures, etc. such as: SMART, or TROPICS, or a Sustainability model such as Silvius and Schipper’s, or The Phase Model by Dunphy, Griffiths and Benn, or any other model you like) that will be relevant to apply during the planning, implementation and monitoring of each task. Explain how the change will be monitored and evaluated: i.e. the list of the key performance indicators (KPIs) and other measures that will help check the progress of the overall sustainable strategy action plan.

3. Final remarks

Write a relevant set of final remarks, and ideally setting new targets for further developments.

for the department/company in the near future.

4. Bibliography and Acknowledgements

Marking criteria:

The Table below provides the assessment criteria and the indicative weighting of each criteria regarding SUMMATIVE 2 (Individual Report):

(Individual Report)
Demonstrated analysis and development of the fictional case 30
Application of relevant sustainability concepts and tools (e.g. concepts, 30
frameworks, models, indicators, etc.)
Structure and coherence of the presentation, and alignment with the requirements 15
Demonstrated evaluation of the feasibility of the action plan, and insightful use of relevant arguments sustaining the plan 15
Bibliography and Acknowledgements 10

Reminder: IF you include a section called ‘Conclusion’, OR if you write ‘IN conclusion..’ or ‘To conclude…’

you will be penalized -2%. You may use a final section named ‘Concluding remarks’, for example.